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The Fastest Bicycle Rider in the World: The True Story of America's First Black World Champion (5-Minute Therapy)

The Fastest Bicycle Rider in the World: The True Story of America's First Black World Champion (5-Minute Therapy)

Current price: $16.95
Publication Date: January 10th, 2023
Publisher:
Microcosm Publishing
ISBN:
9781648411328
Pages:
224
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About the Author

Cultural anthropologist Adonia E. Lugo was born and raised in traditional and unceded Acjachemen territory and now lives and works in traditional and unceded Tongva territory in Los Angeles. Adonia began investigating transportation, race, and space during her graduate studies at UC Irvine, when she co-created the Los Angeles open street event CicLAvia and the organization today known as People for Mobility Justice. Since receiving her doctorate in 2013, Adonia has applied her research on "human infrastructure" in the transition to sustainable transportation and collaborated to define the concept of "mobility justice." Microcosm published her book Bicycle/Race: Transportation, Culture, & Resistance in 2018. Adonia is Equity Research Manager at the UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies and a core organizer of The Untokening. In May 2022, Governor Gavin Newsom appointed her to the California Transportation Commission. Marshall "Major" Taylor (1878-1932) was a Black American cyclist who was one of the greatest bicyclists of his era, setting numerous world records and winning a World Championship and multiple national championships, as well as establishing numerous world records. He was an international superstar whose superhuman exploits were as well-known in his era as LeBron James or Michael Jordan are today. Despite his many laudable achievements, he battled overt racism and prejudice throughout his career and lifetime. In 1928, Taylor published an autobiography titled The Fastest Bicycle Rider in the World: The Story of a Colored Boy's Indomitable Courage and Success Against Great Odds. Born in 1878 in Indianapolis, Indiana, Taylor retired in 1910 at age 32. In his autobiography, he cited the mental strain of battling racism in competitive cycling as one reason for his retirement. Later in life, he was forced into poverty and eventually died of a heart attack in 1932 in Chicago. In recent years, efforts have been made to revive Taylor's story and introduce it to younger generations. In addition to the Major Taylor Program at Cascade Bicycle Club, Taylor's name is now celebrated with memorials and historic markers, such as The Major Taylor Velodrome in Indianapolis and Major Taylor Boulevard in Worcester, Massachusetts. His story has also been celebrated in film, including a recent ESPN short, "The Six Day Race: The Story of Marshall 'Major' Taylor." Ayesha McGowan is a professional road cyclist and an advocate for better representation of POC in cycling. Her work on diversity in representation in cycling, inspires people to ride more and to challenge how they define who is a "cyclist".